His road to redemption was complete. On Sunday evening, Luis Suarez, after losing to Chelsea earlier in the day and potentially doing likewise to the Premier League title, arrived at London's famous Grosvenor House Hotel in the middle of Kevin Bridges', the evening's comedian, set. The Uruguayan was the outright favourite for the prestigious accolade.
When host Jake Humphrey announced the 26 year-old as the recipient of the accolade, his name was met with admiring cheers. It was a stark contrast to the reception he received last year, jeered by fellow professionals in derision at his infamous racist assault inflicted upon Patrice Evra and his bite on Branislav Ivanovic. He ambled up to the elegant stage, hugged England manager Roy Hodgson, who he hopes to irritate at the World Cup, and finally collected his merited trophy.
His charm offensive continued here. He expressed his deep gratitude for the Liverpool squad and staff, which were in attendance in force, and broke into tears as he dedicated the award to his wife, Sofia, and his two children, Delfina and Benjamin. They can be proud of their father's redemption.
Evra, the victim of Suarez's usage of racist slurs, acknowledged the Uruguayan's progression, informing that he had voted for a man who he had once despised. His scintillating form on the pitch did not single-handedly contribute to Suarez's nomination as the recipient of the prestigious gong.
Yet, Suarez has been incredible for Liverpool this term, aiding their charge towards a first league crown since 1990. He has broken records for amusement, overtaking Robbie Fowler's Premier League club record of 28 goals in a season and became the first Liverpool player to reach 30 league goals since Ian Rush in 1986/87.
His magnificent work rate and incredibly unquenchable desire is a pleasure to view, his competitive nature exceeding limits at times, most notably when he bit Otman Bakkal during his stay in the Netherlands, inflicted upon Ivanovic a fearsome bite and Evra racial abuse. Now, his strong will to succeed is being channelled through his football.
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